Inspired by the gluten-free version of Herman on your website, I went ahead and made a gluten-free Herman starter, and have handed out some of the portions and made a cake with the remainder. It came out brilliantly!

For the starter, I simply used Doves Plain White gluten-free flour blend, instead of normal flour, and followed the instructions.

For the cake, I used:

  • one portion of my gluten-free Herman starter
  • melted butter (instead of the oil as I didn’t have enough oil)
  • 4 oz Doves Plain White gluten-free flour blend
  • 2 oz Millet flour (available online)
  • 2 oz Tapioca flour or Tapioca starch (same thing, I believe) (also available online)
  • 1/2 cup golden caster and 1/2 cup light brown soft sugar
  • 1.5 tsp xantham gum
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces, very roughly chopped
  • and the rest was as instructed in the basic instructions, making sure the baking powder is gluten-free (readily available in supermarkets)

I didn’t just mix it all together – I started by beating the sugar and butter together until smooth and creamy, then adding the eggs, raisins, apple and walnuts, then Herman, and finally the flours, xantham gum, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. I didn’t over-mix once it was all together, I just made sure it was well mixed with not too many lumps.

I baked it in a 9 inch round spring-form tin, greased and double lined because gluten-free flours tend to burn easily. Oven temp 180° C. It took a long time to bake (about 1 1/4 hours). The first 45 minutes was without any covering on top, then I covered the edges with foil to stop them burning as the middle cooked properly.

I took it out when it was only just done as gluten free cakes can sometimes be a bit dry and crumbly, but I think it could have stayed in 10 minutes longer. After 45 minutes I was checking it every 15 minutes, to make sure.

Hope this can be of use to other people.

Well done on a lovely website!

by Hannah Walker